I have been using MythTV in my living room for the last couple of months, and it’s quite a nice setup. Originally, I got it as a media player after the DSM-320 didn’t live up to my expectations (it’s still usable, but it’s been relegated to the 13″ TV in the bedroom).
We don’t actually subscribe to cable, and only get a few network channels that ‘leak’ through from the cable internet, so I never really intended it to act as a PVR. One day I happened to see a good deal on a Hauppage PVR-150 that included a remote, so I figured what the heck.
It’s nice to have it record a few shows every day, and the “only keep x episodes” feature is handy. I even have it recording the local 6 o’clock news (and only keeping 1 episode) since I never usually watch it at that time. It’s also nice to always have a few episodes of The Simspons to pick through.
I’ve never been a slave to the TV schedule, I’d rather just not watch something than re-arrange the rest of my life around a tv show. For shows that interest me enough, I’ll download them and watch them at my leisure, and never miss an episode or watch them out of order. Having a PVR to do that just makes things easier.
Overall, myth was fairly straightforward to get working. I installed it on a Debian Sarge box, from source, along with ivtv and lircd.
I wanted to post some of my config files, particularly for the remote setup, since it was very difficult to find the files for these, and for some unknown reason almost no one has posted complete configs (that have all the buttons configured) for the remotes.
- /etc/lircd.conf – Remote definitions for various Hauppage remotes
- /home/mythtv/.mythtv/lircrc – Mapping of remote buttons to MythTV commands
I also have asterisk and FreePBX installed to run my phones (I’ll write another post about that another time). One of the nice things about it is I have an on-screen popup when someone calls. I’ve written instructions on how to set up freepbx with mythtv osd on the FreePBX documentation wiki.
It does take a bit of reading and a bit of playing around, but it’s well worthwhile to setup MythTV as a PVR.
By the way: sorry about the crappy quality images for the live TV, it’s from my cell phone camera. I couldn’t take a screenshot of the video output (it just came out blue, like in the program guide picture).